Social Science Baha

Lecture Series

World Heritage In The Global Tourism Market: Consumption Versus Cosmic Order

Kurt Luger
Lecture Series XLV
February 24, 2011

Kurt Luger
World Heritage in the Global Tourism Market: Consumption versus Cosmic OrderUNESCO’s World Heritage List currently has 911 entries—704 cultural heritage sites, 180 natural heritage sites, and 27 mixed cultural/natural properties—distributed among 151 countries, from the leading industrialised nations to the Least Developed Countries. Humanity is blessed with a wealth of heritage treasures to be passed on to coming generations. But for this to be possible, strategies are needed to enable long-term use without doing further damage.

Tourism, not least in the form of cultural tourism, can make an important contribution to this end. The International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) operates with the concepts of tangible culture elements like buildings and historical town areas, and intangible elements, which include such expressions of local popular culture as music, dance and spiritual traditions. These are the very raw materials of a tourism product—without them, cultural tourism would never have become such a rapidly expanding sector worldwide.

The lecture will examine the basic problem areas in the interaction between cultural tourism and World Heritage management, taking as its point of departure the overarching goal of sustainability. Indicators for suitable tourism development in protected and endangered areas are addressed as well as possible approaches to responsible management of World Heritage sites.

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Listen to or download lecture in audio format


Kurt Luger is the head of the Transcultural Division at the Department of Communication Science and co-founder of the Department for Interdisciplinary Tourism Research at Salzburg University. He has taught at Pepperdine University, Tribhuvan University, and at Department of Mass Communication, University of Zurich.

Since 2004 Prof Luger’s scientific research and lecturing work has focused on the topic of world heritage. He has a number of publications to his credit, including Kulturelles Erbe und Tourismus (Cultural Heritage and Tourism), Welterbe nd Tourismus (World Heritage Tourism), Transdisziplinäre Kommunikation (Transdisciplinary Communication), and Kultur, Tourismus und Entwicklung im Himalaya (Culture, Tourism and Development in the Himalayas), and Kids of Khumbu: Sherpa Youth on the Modernity Trail.

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